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Chrome Marker versus Bare Metal method?


Mutato
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Hi all,

I'm cracking away at this model and finally got to applying the Bare Metal chrome to the trim areas. This was the first time, and I did pretty well applying. I am good at doing stuff like this, but I am disappointed at the look. It looks too much like tin foil! Maybe it's not smooth enough? And I burnished etc...

Anyway I am thinking of taking it off and getting one of those Molotow chrome markers I've heard about. Any recommends on the tip size?  

IMG_2135.JPG

IMG_2137.JPG

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I did that. Watched some videos. Seems that all the burnishing in the world won't get it smooth.

I used the Q tip to get it laid down, plus the toothpick to get into grooves. Burnished with finger, Q tip etc.  Not sure what I did wrong.

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Here are a few tips I have learned about using foil for the past 40 years:

1 - make sure the paint is fully cured, dry is not good enough. Fully cured may be an extra few days or week, depending on the paint you use. If the paint is not fully cured, you may damage it.

2 - apply a coat of non-silicone wax before you foil. It leaves the surface smoother and makes the foil look better, no bumpy or grainy finish.

3 - cut small straight strips and apply them straight. You can trim they easily with a NEW blade. I use stainless steel surgical blades, much higher quality and better edge for cutting. 

4 - I always burnish with the flat side of a toothpick or with the side of a small plastic paint dabber. 

5 - apply a coat of wax after to add more shine. 

6 - This is an original 1963 Corvette and all the foil was done with 1 new blade, a fresh sheet of foil (if it is cracked, use only the smooth bits, never try to smooth the cracks). This is about 4 hours of foiling. 

Chevrolet Corvette 1963 custom coupe AMT1963 002.JPG

Chevrolet Corvette 1963 coupe 001.JPG

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The Molotow pen isn't a good replacement for foil around windows. It's best for smaller pieces like door handles, mirrors, dash knobs, and repairs to small areas that might have a void in the foil or where you clipped a chrome part from the sprue.

I suspect your main problem may be the use of Bare Metal Foil's "Ultra-Bright" chrome. If that's the case, I suggest trying a sheet of the "New Improved" regular foil. It looks less shiny on the sheet, but it lays down much smoother, has a more in-scale appearance, and it can be polished to a bright sheen with the same compounds used to polish paint.

Some people swear by "Ultra-Bright", I just swear at it. I didn't like the appearance, how it cut/trimmed, and the lack of adhesion vs. the regular foil.

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  it will only be as smooth (or as rough) as the surface it's being applied to.

And the Molotow markers will show any imperfections in the paint just like foil does. I love the Molotow marker, but the finish is waaaay too fragile for windows and body moldings. Keep practicing with the foil... It'll get easier!

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Back in the 60's we used to "hand paint" the window trim on our models, and if we made mistakes we would have to do our best to correct them. Sometimes this method would ruin a good paint job, depending upon how steady the person was painting the trim. The Molotow markers give me the idea that they're pretty much like painting when doing the window trim. The BMF is very "forgiving" when one makes a mistake and it can be corrected easily b removing the piece of foil and doing it over 'til one gets it right.

I would probably use my Molotow pens mostly for touching up chrome plated parts where they were attached to the sprues, and maybe doing the vent window trim on the bodies, etc. But definitely not to completely replace using BMF.

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Mike 51 makes a very good point about the surface to which you are applying the film. Something I have started to do is to mask window trim and even body moldings before painting the body. This leaves a very smooth surface to apply the foil too. It will also leave a very defined parting line since you will often lose much of the definition between the moldings and the body during painting. I have also studied how the moldings themselves are on a 1:1 car. Almost all moldings are fairly strait  and use small trim for corners or where the join another piece of trim. I will cut my foil to mimic the 1:1 piece. By doing the moldings in this way there is less chance of the foil getting "balled up" at corners. The same thing with body side trim. They are usually straight pieces with breaks at each door opening. I just try to do one short section at a time. This all may seem very time consuming, but for me the results are worth the extra time. Foiling is one of those things that can and will drive you nuts but once you find what works for you it no longer seems that hard.       

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I find it helpful to rescribe the lines around the trim before paint. I dont think you can beat the BMF for the large open areas,and would consider the Chrome pens for close tight work. Thats my plan. Yours may vary.

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All the window brightwork on this one is Molotow pen:

Whereas this one is BMF

The main difference is that the first took about 5 minutes, the second about two hours... you really can't see much difference in the display case.

Don't get me wrong. I like BMF (but agreed, not the Ultra Bright stuff). It's not the application that bugs me, but the fact that although the amount on a sheet in theory could last me for years, in practice, within a year the sheet has wrinkled in the packet, and cracks everywhere there's a wrinkle. So I'm paying the best part of £10 for a sheet, which I can maybe use 1/10 of before it becomes virtually unusable.

best,

M.

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To me, one of the main things about applying either the Motolow Pen or Bare Metal is the underlying paint has to be smooth with NO orange peel. I use a pointed cotton Makeup applicator, or a pointed stick to burnish the foil, and I never apply Bare Metal Foil before I polish the paint. I have used the Motolow pen on smooth styrene and resin with very good results.

Edited by Ron Hamilton
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I greatly appreciate this thread as I think it pointed to the exact set of problems (plural!) that I experienced on my 66 Lincoln foiling project. No the paint was not cured, no I did not wax it. No I did not properly burnish it. While it does not help with that model, it will help with the next one. A lot.  Again,  I can't say enough how much I appreciate this topic. Thanks guys.

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Go to a CVS or Walgreens in the make up area.  In a round container you might find some really pointy, tightly wound Q-tips.  These should aid in the burnishing process.

They have those Q-Tips that you speak of at Hobby Lobby where the hobby tools are, like Exacto knives, etc.

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